Rebate Program Benefits Branson KOA
Ralph and Kim Newell considered ways to improve the bottom line at their KOA Kampground in Branson, Mo., and decided to help with campers’ fuel costs by offering cash rewards for extended stays.
So starting in June, campers who stay for seven consecutive nights at the Branson KOA are reimbursed $50 for their fuel costs. It gets better the longer the stay. Campers who stay for two weeks receive $125; a three-week stay nets campers $200 and those who stay for a month will receive a $400 rebate.
Even seasonal campers who stay for two months or more can get in on the action, with a total reimbursement of $500 per month on their fuel costs.
In the first 45 days, the Newells paid out 27 $50 rebates; two $125 rebates and one at $300 “and he’s still going," Ralph Newell told Woodall's Campground Management.
Is it worth the effort?
“It sure has been for us. It has been the distinguishing feature between us and the 70 other campgrounds in the Branson area,” said Newell, who purchased the campground and converted to the KOA franchise three years ago. “The press and extra people have really helped,” he said. The rebate program also “has improved the attitude of our campers.”
Average camper stays at the 170-site campground were 3.4 nights before he instituted the program and through the end of July it has risen to 3.9 nights. The extended stays mean campers are spending more at the camp store and restaurant, buying more show tickets and other fee services offered at the campground, he said
“We know that everyone is feeling the strain of higher fuel prices,” he said. “But that’s no reason not to continue to enjoy camping. We don’t care if you’re coming from across the country or from just down the street, your fuel reimbursement will be waiting.”
The reimbursements are awarded at check out time, and are good on any stay of at least seven consecutive nights on any RV site at the campground, subject to availability. Advanced reservations are required, and no other special offers may apply. Most participants are asking for the rebate to be put back on their credit cards.
The program is good through the end of August.